A Couple of Smooth Operators

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Dad and son shaving
Image: Chris Wickersham

I got my 6-year-old son a Spider-Man shaving kit for Christmas and he said, “What is this for?” I told him to come close and whispered in his ear, “Daddy got one too, want to go learn how to shave with me later today?” He beamed and said yes! “Don’t tell anyone else, it will be our secret surprise.”

A few hours later, after the chaotic tornado of present wrapping had dissipated, he and I went into my bathroom, locked the door, and proceeded to have an absolute blast covering our faces in shaving cream and sharing in the most father-son of all traditions. He has never seen me without a beard; I can’t remember when I started growing one but it was more than 6 years ago and he has never even seen a razor on my vanity. He giggled and laughed as I made all kinds of faces and showed him how to shave first with the grain, then against it to get an incredibly smooth face. He was sure he could tell the difference on his own face too: “Feel how smooth my cheeks are, daddy!”

First time shaving
Image: Chris Wickersham

We left my bedroom with proud smiles on our faces and, for me, a bit of a nervous flutter. I have had a beard for the entirety of my relationship with my significant other and I wasn’t sure she was prepared for the drastic change I had seen in the mirror mere minutes before. I said to my son, “I hope Ms. Kayte still thinks I’m pretty!”

“Don’t worry, daddy, she will still love you.”

Everyone was shocked, people kept laughing when they looked at us. I heard from more than one person, “you don’t look bad, it’s just so different, I can’t stop laughing!” My twins girls were falling all over themselves trying to get away from me, but, eventually, their curiosity took hold and they were on my lap kissing my smooth cheeks. “I love it daddy, don’t ever grow a beard again.” I wasn’t sure Kayte felt the same way but I didn’t care; there was nothing that could equal the time I had just spent with my son. His joy during that moment is what the holidays are all about. “I’m gonna leave my shaving stuff here on your sink Daddy, you just let me know anytime you want to shave and we’ll do it together.”

Freshly shaved dad
Image: Chris Wickersham

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